German corporates assessing Asian financing opportunities
With significant growth for German corporates coming from Asia, the need to implement financing solutions in the region is key. The issue is complicated by a fragmented market with diverse legal frameworks, requiring local knowledge and support to navigate.
This important theme of Asian financing was the focus of the Mizuho-led panel at the annual Structured Finance Conference in Stuttgart Germany last week. Mizuho was a proud partner and exhibitor at this leading conference for German corporates, with more CFOs attending this event than any other similar conference.
The Mizuho panel discussion, "Efficient financing in diverse Asian countries” attracted significant interest with many attendees. Nico Popp, Managing Director, European Corporate Finance at Mizuho in Frankfurt was joined by Bernd Bode, Head of Group Treasury and Investor Relations for Volkswagen Financial Services.
The discussion was free-ranging, but inevitably turned to China – Asia’s largest market and a key focus for German corporates. The opportunities for onshore financing are significant, but bring challenges. As Nico pointed out, "The Chinese onshore bond market is arguably the most exciting of what global capital markets have to offer these days. Despite its dynamic growth and being six times larger than a decade ago, there's little foreign investor participation. Opaque credit assessments – more than 90% of Chinese onshore bonds carry a local rating of AA or above – and frequent regulatory changes suggest to me that there is room for creating value by advising issuers and investors alike on the specifics of this market".
During the conference, Mizuho Bank was able to present its global franchise, highlighting balance sheet strength alongside its ethos of Japanese commitment and a deep understanding of Asian markets, which was well received by clients. “Being involved in this conference was extremely beneficial, as well as enjoyable, and we’re already looking forward to next year,” commented Nico.